three_percent

3% Down, High Rents & The Sandwich Returns

Today Freddie Mac launched Home Possible AdvantageSM, a new affordable mortgage with a down payment option as low as 3%. Here are the answers to your top questions: “Who is this mortgage for?”  “What do I need to qualify for it?”  “Can I use gift funds as my down payment?” 3% Down: Your Top Questions…




MarketstoWatch1

Prices Up, Consumers Upbeat & Dropbox Drops Into Seattle

Consumers think 2015 will be a better year than 2014, especially for selling a home. But the recovery will slow as the rebound effect fades before fundamentals become strong. Key markets to watch are in the Northeast, South, and West. Housing In 2015: Consumers Upbeat, But Recovery Faces A Tricky Handoff – Forbes The U.S. economy,…




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MLS Market Update: December 2014

KIRKLAND, Washington (Dec. 4, 2014) – Buyer interest remains high and many good values exist for those whose holiday wish list includes a new home, according to brokers with Northwest Multiple Listing Service. A new report from the MLS summarizing November activity shows year-over-year gains in pending sales, closed sales and median prices. The report…




seattle in progress

Expensive Places, Choosy Buyers & Seattle Progress

Seattle in Progress is a mobile web app for seeing what’s being built in Seattle. Think of it as a modern alternative to the “notice of proposed land use” boards currently posted at construction sites. These signs, often covered in graffiti, offer minimal information about the development and no easy way to learn more, voice…




apple

Mortage Fraud, Tax Limbo, Apple Comes To Ballard & Low Low Rates

There are unconfirmed reports that Apple has opened a temporary office in Ballard in a Regus facility, 1455 N.W. Leary Way. News site GeekWire reported that Apple is operating in Ballard. Apple takes a bite out of Ballard. What’s next? – PSBJ Mortgage-debt relief twists in tax limbo – Seattle Times Average US 30-year loan…




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MLS Market Update: November 2014

Brokers say home buyers are back, but they’re choosy KIRKLAND, Washington (Nov. 5, 2014) – Home buyers are back, and they’re savvy and selective, according to officials who commented on the latest statistics from Northwest Multiple Listing Service. For sellers, that means pricing a home correctly at the start is vital, said industry veteran Kathy…




water

Remember the Water Mantra – OFF Your Roof and AWAY from Your Home

Pop quiz! How many gallons of water does the average-sized Seattle roof (1,000 square feet) shed during the course of the year? If you guessed 35,000 gallons – kudos! You are correct! In Seattle we are faced with consistent rainfall and this can pose a myriad of issues if the moisture penetrates your home. The…




http://www.placearchitects.com/

So Long QE3, Salt Signals More Condo Construction & ‘Coming Soon’ Expands

Fed ends QE3 and sends upbeat signals on economy – Market Watch Fed Stimulus Over: What About Interest Rates? – Nation Association of Realtors The Federal Reserve has ended its bond-purchasing program, known as “quantitative easing,” saying it is confident in the economic recovery. Since 2008, the Fed has been purchasing mortgages and Treasurys that…




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The Appraisal Process Made Clear

The appraisal process can raise many questions.  Especially when the value comes back from the appraiser below the purchase price.  Below are a few commonly asked questions with answers from the National Realtor Association. Q. Will the homebuyer receive a copy of the appraisal? A. Yes. The Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) requires creditors to…




Alibaba_Chinese_logo

Alibaba, SLU & Better Mornings Ahead

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba may have quietly opened an office in downtown Seattle, in competitor Amazon’s own backyard.  And other headlines: Alibaba ramps up recruiting for Seattle office – PSBJ Market turmoil: A gift for mortgage refinancers? – AP Three big new words in Seattle real estate: ‘South Lake Union’ – Seattle PI Redfin buys…




pmms_chart 10.24.2014

Mortage Rates Haven’t Been This Low Since 2013

Freddie Mac today released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey showing average fixed mortgage rates hitting fresh lows for the year for the second consecutive week amid declining bond yields. At 3.92 percent the average 30-year fixed rate is at its lowest level since the week of June 6, 2013. 30-year fixed-rate mortgage…




forclosure

Tight Spaces, Descendants, Forget Foreclosures & Oops Wrong Lot

Foreclosure Niche Is a Vanishing Business – NAR First-ever affordable housing tax gets nod from Seattle council – PSBJ Developer promises new condos in downtown Seattle – PSBJ Scrunched in Seattle – Politico Average US 30-year mortgage rate at 3.97 percent – AP Fannie, Freddie to Loosen Up on Lending – NAR In Ocean Hammock,…




danny belmont 2

Development tax in Seattle, micro-housing & a walk around Green Lake

A few links from today’s office meeting topics… ‘Serious concerns’ raised about plan to tax Seattle developers for affordable housing – PSBJ Seattle council approves micro-housing rules – KING 5 Belmont Court condo showcases the powers of good staging – Curbed Green Lake Pathway of Lights – December 13th!  




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MLS Market Update: October 2014

Home Sales Stay Strong Prices approaching “affordability ceiling” for some buyers KIRKLAND, Washington (Oct 6, 2014) – Pending sales of homes around Western Washington  surged more than 13 percent in September compared to a year ago, and listing activity picked up slightly, fueling both broker optimism and words of advice for sellers. Along with increases…




Real Estate Headlines 10.08.2013

Fannie Mae (FNMA_) has introduced new, temporary guidelines to servicers and sellers of single-family loans in response to the government shutdown. The housing giant is unaffected by the shutdown as it is still a private company, albeit in conservatorship. However, the government shutdown still threatens to delay the process of obtaining a home loan. Fannie…




MLS Market Update: October 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 4, 2013 Region’s housing activity still “speeding along,” but pace slowing as seasons change, uncertainty looms amid government shutdown Kirkland, WA – October 4, 2013. September tested the housing market’s resilience around Western Washington with fluctuating mortgage rates, record-setting rains, and persistent inventory shortages in some areas. By month’s end, however,…




Real Estate Headlines 10.01.2013

For more than a generation now, like it or not, Wall Street’s financial engineering has helped determine whether the average American can buy a home. Once upon a time—before Wall Street stuck its nose under the mortgage tent—the formula for homeownership was pretty simple: if the neighborhood banker thought you would pay it back, you…




Real Estate Headlines 09.10.2013

There were a few more homes for sale in the Seattle area last month than in July, although the situation remained tight.  Seattle had 1.6 months worth of homes for sale at the current sales pace in August, up from 1.5 months of inventory in July. King County had 1.9 months of inventory, up from…




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MLS Market Update: September 2013

Demand for Puget Sound area homes “still incredibly strong,” but brokers report frenzy is easing in some neighborhoods Kirkland, WA – September 5, 2013. Northwest Multiple Listing Service figures for August show brisk sales, escalating prices and some improvement in inventory, prompting one MLS director to declare, “What these numbers tell us loud and clear…



Real Estate Headlines 08.13.2013

Real estate experts call it a mini power surge of sales as every indicator in the Puget Sound housing industry is showing double-digit gains. After years of recession, Puget Sound housing market booming ~ KOMO4 Obama Urges Access to 30-Year Fixed-Rate Mortgage ~ NAR Obama takes questions on housing in Zillow chat ~ CNN Money




Real Estate Headlines 08.06.2013

The Greater Seattle market in May posted a 3.1 percent monthly gain, its largest since April 1990, according to data released Tuesday. The region’s 12-month increase was 11.9 percent — the biggest  annual gain since December 2006.  Seattle home prices zipping upward, but slowdown likely ~ Seattle Times US new-home sales jump to highest level…